Tag Archives: 40I

Tips for flying with the iPad at night

Night iPad tips

As we get closer to winter there’s a better chance that you’ll be doing a little more night flying as the days get shorter and the sun sets earlier in the evening. If you haven’t flown much at night throughout the summer it’s a good time to get out and practice some night landings and and think about the operational differences from day flying.

Before we had the iPad, we relied on flashlights and other gadgets to light up the cockpit and view charts in the dark. While you’ll still need a flashlight for preflight and as a backup lighting source (we really like this one by the way), the days of holding a mini-maglite in your mouth and shining it down on a paper sectional are gone thanks to the iPad’s backlit screen.

But just because the iPad solves part of the night lighting equation doesn’t mean you can just hop in the airplane and start using it the same way you do during the day. Here are some things to consider the next time you go flying at night with your iPad.

1. Dim the iPad screen—before heading out to the dark cockpit, make a point to set the iPad’s screen brightness control to lowest possible setting, that way the screen won’t come on at full brightness when you turn it on for the first time in the airplane and ruin your night vision. To adjust this bring up the iPad’s Control Center by sliding your finger up from the bottom of the screen and use the brightness slider located on the right side of the control.

iPad Screen Brightness

2. Set Auto-Brightness to OFF—after setting the screen brightness to the lowest value, go into the main iPad settings and turn the Auto-Brightness setting off. This is located in Settings>Display and Brightness>Auto-Brightness. This will ensure the iPad doesn’t inadvertently get brighter on its own in response to ambient lighting changes in the cockpit.

screen auto-brightness

3. In-app screen dimming—in our experiences even the lowest screen brightness setting can still be too bright once your eyes adjust to low light at night, especially when viewing the congested yellow areas of a sectional or a bright white instrument approach chart. Fortunately most apps provide a setting that allows you to dim the screen even more to a level that’s easier on the eyes:

  • ForeFlight -> On the Maps screen, tap the Settings button (gear shape) at the top of the screen, and adjust the slider labeled Screen Brightness. Just make sure that when you open ForeFlight again the next day to bring this setting back up again for normal viewing.
  • Garmin Pilot -> While there isn’t a screen-dimming feature built in to Garmin Pilot, there is a dedicated function called Night Mode. This mode is activated from the Menu button at the top right of the Maps view. This will switch the VFR/IFR data-driven map screens to a darker color scheme and cut down on the amount of light emitted from the iPad.
  • Wing-X Pro -> This app includes several options to assist with night flying and the iPad. First at the top right of the home screen you’ll find a moon-shaped button that activates night mode and changes the app to a darker color scheme. Next when on the Moving Map page you’ll see a light bulb button at the top right with several night-enhancement settings, including in-app screen dimming, nighttime charts, white-on-black charts (useful when viewing approach charts or airport diagrams) and finally a toggle for even more screen dimming if needed.

2015-10-14 11.51.24

4. Triple-click invert colors—this tip is one of our long-time favorites and works on any app. This allows you to quickly press the home button at the bottom of the iPad three times to invert the colors of the screen, displaying approach charts or airport diagrams with white ink on a black background. You must enable this feature though before it will work. To do this, go to Settings>General>Accessibility>Accessibility Shortcut>Invert Colors.

triple click invert

5. ADS-B Receiver Status Light Dimming—just like you dim the annunciator lights on your instrument panel at night, you’ll want to consider doing the same thing on your ADS-B receiver. For those flying with the Stratus ADS-B receiver, this is accomplished directly from the ForeFlight app. Tap the Settings button at the top of the map page (gear button), scroll to the bottom of the window and select Stratus, and then scroll down again about midway until you see a slider for LED Brightness–setting this to a lower setting will decrease the brightness of the status lights on the front of the Stratus.

Stratus LED brightness

6. iPad Mounting—securing your iPad at night takes on even more importance in a dark cabin, as trying to find it after it slips off your lap or falls off the seat will be a challenge at night. You can find several iPad kneeboards for under $20, or use a more secure yoke or window mounting option to make sure it stays in place in all conditions. Read more here on our Guide to iPad Mounting.

7. Power backup—one of the positives that comes from night iPad flying is that the lower screen brightness leads to better battery life. But just as your aircraft’s electrical system takes on additional importance during night flying, so does your iPad’s battery. It’s just as important to consider “what-if” scenarios and bring a long some way to provide extra power if the need arises. The easiest way is to bring along a cigarette lighter USB charger if you have that port in your airplane, and if that’s not an option consider a battery backup. If a flight pops up at the last minute and you don’t have access to these items, consider a second iPad, iPhone or a few paper charts as suitable backups too.

8. Expand your iPad’s capabilities—while the primary use of your iPad at night will most likely be to display charts, consider other ways to take advantage of the iPad’s backlit screen for night flying. Ditch the paper checklist and the flashlight needed to view it in favor of an iPad checklist app. And instead of writing clearances or other notes with pen and paper, take advantage of your app’s built in scratchpad.

AircraftChecklist iPad 2

9. Use The iPad as a flashlight—while the iPad doesn’t have a dedicated camera flash like the iPhone to use as a flashlight, consider using the screen itself as a source of light when needed in the cockpit. When first arriving in the cabin you can turn it on at a low-brightness setting to provide some diffused ambient lighting to help get things set up. Or consider displaying a white approach chart, turn the brightness up and direct it at the panel if the instrument panel lighting were to go out.

Source: Ipad appsTips for flying with the iPad at night

Red Stewart Airfield, 40I

40I airfield
40I airfield

The Red Stewart field is a family friendly grass strip with a picnic table and small children’s playground. The people here are very friendly and unlike most small or county airports there open to new people coming and having a look. I have noticed that quite a few county and all the commercial airports there is a big fear of new or unknown people having a look around and especially taking photos. I don’t know if it is a fear of the FAA , homeland security or being the next government target.

I am uploading a gallery of some photos we were able to get on an outing at this field.

jumpers1sunset4day at the field

October in Aviation History

  On October 2, 1918, the Kettering Bug, an experimental unmanned “Flying Bomb”, made it’s first flight at McCook Field in Dayton, Ohio. The prototype was completed and delivered to the Aviation Section of the U.S. Army Signal Corps in 1918, near the end of World War I. The first flight was a failure, but subsequent flights were successful, and the aircraft was demonstrated to Army personnel at Dayton.    The air craft was designed by inventor Charles F. Kettering of Dayton and built by the
Source: aviation trailOctober in Aviation History


  Photo from the annual WACO Fly-In held on September 18, 19 and 20, 2015 at historic WACO Field, 1865 S. County Rd. 25A, Troy, Ohio 45373. The weekend included vintage WACO planes, family activities, classic cars (featuring Austin Healy), and access to the WACO Museum. See a slide show of more photos on the “News” page (CLICK HERE).    
Source: aviation trailWACO Fly-In

2015 AeroCarnival

  September 12, 2015 – AeroCarnival ​​ The National Park Service’s AERO CARNIVAL was held at Huffman Prairie on Saturday, September 12, 2015.  This free event included a multitude of activities throughout the day, from 10:30 to 4:30.   Download large version of the poster: CLICK HERE     See the News page (CLICK HERE) for a slide show from the 2015 event.         .
Source: aviation trail2015 AeroCarnival

Parachute Museum Anniversary

  In 2015 The Parachute Museum is celebrating its fifth year of being open to the public as part of the Wright-Dunbar Interpretive Center, Third and Williams Streets in Dayton, Ohio.  Five years ago the Dave Gold family joined Aviation Trail, Inc. in a ribbon cutting ceremony.  Prior to this special event, the Parachute Museum was open to the public in time for the 2003 First Flight Celebration.  The museum at that time was incomplete, but with the Gold collection it was completed, but additions
Source: aviation trailParachute Museum Anniversary

Free Bluegrass Concert

Labor Day, Monday, September 5

DSC_5374Sporty’s Eastern Cincinnati Aviation, in partnership with the Clermont Sun, is hosting its annual Bluegrass Concert at the Clermont County Airport on Labor Day, Monday, September 5.  The free concert featuring the Comet Bluegrass All Stars will begin at 6:30pm with a second set scheduled to begin at 8pm.

Monday, September 5

Comet Bluegrass All-Stars 6:30pm
Comet Bluegrass All-Stars (2nd set) 8:00pm


Bring your lawn chairs, picnic basket and coolers with the entire family for a free evening of delightful music and fun.

From State Route, 32, take the Olive Branch Stonelick exit and follow the airport signs.

Source: SportysFree Bluegrass Concert

FAA Medicals Available at Sporty’s

FAA Aviation Medical Examiner, Dr. John Held, offers aviation medical exams at Sporty’s Clermont County Airport on select Saturdays. The cost of the exam is $100 payable by cash or check (no credit cards accepted).  An EKG (if required) is subject to an additional $35 fee.


Saturday, November 14 9am – 3pm All classes
Saturday, December 5 9am – 3pm All classes
Saturday, December 12 9am – 3pm All classes


To schedule, please call Sporty’s at 513.735.9100 ext. 0.

As a reminder, all pilots seeking an FAA medical are required to apply online via FAA’s MedXPress system.  FAA MedXPress allows anyone requiring an exam to electronically complete the FAA Medical Application (Form 8500-8). Information entered into MedXPress will be transmitted to the FAA and available for the Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) to review at the time of your exam.  A copy of your MedXPress application should be brought to the exam.

A synopsis of FAA medical standards is available here.

Source: SportysFAA Medicals Available at Sporty’s


Sportys-flying-club-logo_final-300x99Join for the passion, fly for the fun

Sporty’s Flying Club is the perfect opportunity to get more enjoyment and utility from your pilot certificate, delivering a host of exclusive benefits for pilots flying select rental aircraft at Sporty’s Eastern Cincinnati Aviation. Whether you’re an afternoon recreational flyer or require safe, reliable transportation for business or vacation, membership in Sporty’s Flying Club provides valuable benefits to create a fun, hassle-free aviation experience.



– G1000-equipped Cessna 172 Skyhawk at $79/hour (dry – fuel not included)

– G1000-equipped Cessna 182 Skylane at $99/hour (dry – fuel not included)

– No minimum billing for 1-2 day rentals

– Convenient online scheduling

– Preferred currency requirement

G1000_C172_600x450One hour of instruction annually

– Sporty’s G1000 Online Video Course

– Sporty’s Flying Club Polo Shirt

– Access to dedicated 8-day block of availability annually

– Bi-monthly meetings (non-mandatory) for social and educational benefit



– 1-time Enrollment Fee: $299

– Monthly Dues: $49 (1 year commitment please)


Sportys-flying-club-logo_final-300x99Sporty’s Flying Club is the perfect venue to engage in the fun, thrilling adventures general aviation provides.  The Club setting offers a perfect balance of convenience and value – the ideal alternative to the headaches of airplane ownership and unpredictable “rentals”.

The Club is managed by Sporty’s Eastern Cincinnati Aviation. Members must complete an application and possess a Recreational Pilot Certificate or higher and valid FAA Medical Certificate to join.  Membership is limited to 15.

For more information and to join, visit SportysAcademy.com/FlyingClub.